Duane Holmes

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Duane Holmes out ‘weeks’ with ankle injury

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Add Duane Holmes to the growing list of American internationals out injured.

The Derby County midfielder will miss “several weeks” after suffering an ankle injury in the 29th minute of Saturday’s match against Huddersfield Town. The 25-year-old has been a key part of the Derby County midfield this season with two goals and three assists in 28 Championship appearances, including a run of 21 consecutive league starts through this past weekend.

Derby manager Phillip Cocu lamented the loss of Holmes, who has been excellent this season for the Rams. “Duane Holmes will be out. I think several weeks he will be out,” said Cocu ahead of Friday’s matchup with Fulham. “That is a blow because he was a very important player for us and an important part in our style of football – and he was in great form. To lose a player like that at this stage of the season is something we can’t enjoy. He has shown how important he is, and he can play in different positions.”

Derby sits 13th in the Championship table, but they are in good form having lost just two of their last 10 league games, turning things around from an ugly seven-match winless run through November and December that dropped the club as low as 18th. Holmes was replaced by 28-year-old Scottish international Graeme Shinnie, while 19-year-old Jason Knight could also see an increase in playing time while Holmes recovers.

The loss is also a blow for the U.S. National Team and Gregg Berhalter who would have likely looked to Holmes for a spot in the March squad. The USMNT has friendlies against the Netherlands and Wales in late March, but this injury could see Holmes lose steam in a bid for contention.

Berhalter is sweating the health of a long list of players, including Christian Pulisic, Tyler Adams, and Zack Steffen while Paul Arriola, Eric Lichaj, and Michael Bradley have recently gone down with long-term injuries.

USMNT mid Holmes need scans after limping off for Derby County

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The only thing that could cool down USMNT midfielder Duane Holmes is injury.

Holmes was forced out of Derby County’s 1-1 draw with Huddersfield Town after just 29 minutes on Saturday with the match still scoreless.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ] 

The 25-year-old entered the day with three goals and three assists in 2020, combining with Wayne Rooney to send the Rams up the table.

Derby County manager Phillip Cocu said Holmes will need scans to determine the extent of his injury.

Holmes’ form gave him considerable hope of being called into Gregg Berhalter’s USMNT next month for friendlies in Wales and the Netherlands, so those scans will be watched closely by club and country.

The draw has Derby County nine points back of the promotion playoff places.

Top 25 players in the USMNT pool right now

USMNT power rankings
Photo by David Hecker/picture alliance via Getty Images)
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January camp is over following the USMNT’s 1-0 defeat of Costa Rica, but most of the movement on our player pool power rankings comes courtesy of the club game.

Save for Uly Llanez’s “I’m here” performance in that win over Los Ticos, most of the interim has been dominated by Americans Abroad.

Heck, Llanez is included in that; The 18-year-old has 10 goals and three assists in 11 games for Wolfsburg’s U-19 side.

Our first rankings came Nov. 12, four days before Gregg Berhalter’s Yanks rolled over Cuba and Canada to earn a spot in the CONCACAF Nations League semifinals.

This ranking comes almost two months before we’ll next see the red, white, and blue; The USMNT visits Netherlands and Wales on March 26 and 30.

As a reminder, here are some ground rules:

  • The ranking is meant to illustrate who would be most likely to positively affect a USMNT match, regardless of manager or teammates, right now.
  • Health doesn’t matter to our rankings if a current injury isn’t one that could drastically alter the player’s skill set moving forward.
  • Age/potential/experience doesn’t matter either, at least not much; It’s how likely you are to contribute to the team if put on the field right now. Obviously Chris Richards of Bayern Munich II is a better long-term prospect than 32-year-old Tim Ream, but most would rather have the Fulham man in a big spot right now.

Dropping out of our Top 25 are Cristian Roldan, Ike Opara, Fabian Johnson, Paul Arriola, Cameron Carter-Vickers, and Jackson Yueill.

Moving up two spots to second is Weston McKennie, who has become a key piece for another Schalke boss, while Wigan left back Antonee Robinson and Derby County midfielder Duane Holmes enter the list with bullets.

Two other Championship players, Matt Miazga and Tim Ream, slip down the board, but not as far as struggling Newcastle right back DeAndre Yedlin.

Who takes their places? Read on…

Top 25 USMNT players – February 2020

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#injured

1. Christian Pulisic, Chelsea# (1) — Get well soon.
2. Weston McKennie, Schalke (4)
3. John Brooks, Wolfsburg (3)
4. Tyler Adams, RB Leipzig (2) — Healthy, and back starting.
5. Sergino Dest, Ajax (6)
6. Duane Holmes, Derby County (N/R) — Man’s on fire.
7. Alfredo Morales, Fortuna Dusseldorf (5)
8. Jordan Morris, Seattle Sounders (7)
9. Zack Steffen, Fortuna Dusseldorf (10)
10. Antonee Robinson, Wigan Athletic (N/R) — Almost AC Milan!
11. Jozy Altidore, Toronto FC (12)
12. Julian Green, Greuther Furth# (15)
13. Giovanni Reyna, Borussia Dortmund (N/R) — What a goal.
14. Timothy Weah, Lille# (14)
15. Timothy Chandler, Eintracht Frankfurt (N/R) — Incredible resurgence.
16. Tim Ream, Fulham (13)
17. Matt Miazga, Reading (8)
18. Josh Sargent, Werder Bremen (9)
19. Miles Robinson, Atlanta United (23)
20. Ulysses Llanez, Wolfsburg U-19 (N/R) — Go on, son.
21. Tyler Boyd, Besiktas (21)
22. DeAndre Yedlin, Newcastle United (11)
23. Reggie Cannon, FC Dallas (N/R)
24. Michael Bradley, Toronto FC# (18)
25. Sebastian Lletget, LA Galaxy (22)

Next up, established: Fabian Johnson (Borussia Monchengladbach), Jesus Ferreira (FC Dallas), Yueill (San Jose Earthquakes), Arriola (DC United), Carter-Vickers (Luton Town), Gyasi Zardes (Columbus Crew), Roldan (Seattle Sounders), Ethan Horvath (Club Brugge), Paxton Pomykal (FC Dallas), Sam Vines (Colorado Rapids), Opara (Minnesota United)

Next up, youth: Indiana Vassilev (Aston Villa), Konrad de la Fuente (Barcelona), Alex Mendez (Ajax U19), Chris Richards (Bayern Munich II), Richie Ledezma (PSV Eindhoven), Donovan Pines (DC United)

FA Cup: Liverpool’s kids triumph; Saint-Maximin stunner saves Newcastle

FA Cup replays
Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images
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There was drama throughout the FA Cup’s fourth round replays on Tuesday, including a dominant performance from Liverpool’s youngest team ever.

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Only one other Premier League side was in action, and they managed to throw away an early 2-0 lead at League One opposition.

Liverpool 1-0 Shrewsbury Town

Liverpool’s kids more than held their own at Anfield, they dominated League One side Shrewsbury to leave little doubt about how this would’ve gone had Jurgen Klopp deployed even a handful of senior players.

The Reds took the first nine shots of the match, and Shrewsbury Town scored on its first shot of the night but saw it disallowed by VAR.

Canadian 20-year-old Liam Millar was one of many Reds to make their senior debut in the win.

An own goal ended up being the difference on the day for Liverpool, who will enjoy a fifth-round visit to Chelsea.

Derby County 4-2 Northampton Town

Andre Wisdom scored early and American midfielder Duane Holmes had the Rams up 2-0 when he contributed to a goal for the fourth time in five matches.

Jack Marriott had a quick answer for Nicky Adams’ early second-half goal. Wayne Rooney rounded out the scoring as his Derby earned a visit from old pals Manchester United in the fifth round.

Oxford United 2-3 Newcastle United

Sean Longstaff finally found his form for the Magpies, scoring a beautiful goal and setting up Joelinton for another as the Magpies took a 2-0 lead into the break.

The U’s pulled one back through a terrific Liam Kelly free kick in the 84th minute, and Nathan Holland scored a beauty in stoppage time to send the match into extra time.

The second half and start of extra time was almost exclusively under Oxford United’s control, but Allan Saint-Maximin‘s incredible late goal lifted Newcastle to victory.

One thing to watch: Joelinton limped off the pitch after scoring from a rib injury suffered earlier in the match. Newcastle will visit West Bromwich Albion in the fifth round.

Cardiff City 3-3 (1-4 penalties) Reading

Josh Murphy and Robert Glatzel scored for the Welsh side, but Omar Richards and Andy Rinomhota answered in the second half to put the fifth-round berth back on the table.

Murphy completed his brace in the third minute of extra time, but Reading again had an answer through Yakou Meite in the 116th minute.

Cardiff’s first penalty was saved and second attempt wayward, while Reading made its first four to move into the next round and will host Sheffield United in the final 16.

Birmingham City 2-2 (4-1 penalties) Coventry City

Amadou Bakayoko broke a second-half deadlock, but Birmingham City’s Harlee Dean scored in stoppage time to push the replay deeper.

Maxime Biamou scored in the 114th minute to restore Coventry’s lead, but Jeremie Bela answered in the 120th to force kicks.

Coventry City a date at Leicester City in the fifth round.

USMNT mid Duane Holmes scores again for Derby County

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Duane Holmes is a man very much in form, and scored off a long dribble in Derby County’s FA Cup fourth round replay versus Northampton Town on Tuesday.

Scott Malone got the assist as Holmes made a cutting run to meet a long bounding pass, then finished well around the onrushing keeper.

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The American midfielder is thriving alongside Wayne Rooney for the Rams, and now has two goals and two assists in his last five matches.

Holmes, 25, is Georgia-born but moved to England at a young age. He’s earned two caps for the United States men’s national team, and is a candidate to be called into the squad this Spring.

He spent 2002-2016 in the academy and then on the books at Huddersfield Town, taking loans Yeovil Town and Bury before moving to Scunthorpe Town.

It was there he really found his footing, scoring 12 times with eight assists in 94 matches before moving onto the Rams.

Holmes made 24- and 28-minute appearances for Gregg Berhalter against Jamaica and Venezuela in June, but did not earn a call-up for the Gold Cup or CONCACAF Nations League.